The White House has been bleeding support for close to a week now. The secretary of Health and Human Services came out last week with an interpretation of the Affordable Health Choices Act (“Obamacare”) that allows democrats to force all Catholic and other religious institutions to provide contraceptives (pre-conception) as well as post-conception (abortificient) care in their healthcare plans.
The Catholic Church has risen up in an admiral manner against this attack on the famed “separation of Church and State.”
But evangelicals and other pro-lifers know all-too-well that many Catholic leaders will only fight to a certain point. A “compromise” is coming and we need to ensure it is the right one, not only to prevent the expansion of government-sponsored abortion policy but as a stopgap against an infringement on religious liberty.
Under fire from the right and mainstream democrats, the White House is already talking “compromise.” This has been handled beautifully by Obama’s team. They started the narrative on the far left, people were shocked. Now all we want is some sort of compromise! Anything! We’ll take it! Now, in a masterful stroke, the White House will attempt to move the conversation back to the center-left so that the final product “isn’t so bad.”
But we can still win this thing by trashing the entire proposal.
What the White House will likely offer is their abortion “go-to” alternative. The fungible money well is never dry for compromisers on this issue. Like the Stupak executive order and the Hyde Amendment before that, the Administration is likely working on a model that will serve to expand coverage for abortion, while ensuring that no well-intentioned religious person will be asked to pay for it.
Essentially, our government policy is to separate money with the lines of a checkbook ledger and say that the money on the left can pay for abortions while the money on the right cannot. We pay no attention to the fact that it all goes to the same place and tax payer funds sustain and enable groups that fund abortions.
This compromise will likely set up a similar system except that the private company will be forced to provide a way to obtain the procedure, while the Church will be forced to provide the plan that includes the procedure, as long as the mother pays out-of-pocket.
The Administration will force Catholic employers to adopt healthcare programs that provide for abortificient pills and birth control, but the asterisk will simply say employees must pay out-of-pocket. Catholics will be forced to now play the part of enabler.
Catholics will have no option to entirely avoid plans that don’t offer abortion. Instead,
Why are the democrats forcing this issue?
Democrats are trying to make the case that abortive pills fall under the category of necessary and “preventive” services. If they can get even Catholic churches ensuring that a way to obtain an abortion is somehow offered under every insurance plan, then they’ve moved the ball farther down the field.
If Catholics compromise on this, they are still ceding ground to Mr. Obama and the pro-abort lobby. Not only that, but they are allowing First Amendment rights to be trampled over. I realize this is a grown up discussion. Playing hard ball is difficult. Most voting Catholics tend to vote Democrat. The Catholic Church is in danger of being heavily fined and losing federal funding. This is going to be a tough fight. It may seem like a small price to pay for many Catholics. But they can win this thing yet.
The winds is at the backs of Catholics. Obama needs them to drop this issue more than they need Obama to bend to their will. Catholics have a year to comply, Obama has a few more days to stop the bleeding before his poll numbers begin to drop among Catholics in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida.
We have already compromised
Before anyone accuses the religious right of not being willing to compromise, let me remind them that the country already allows abortions to take place. That is a pretty big compromise. Not only that, but almost no restrictions can be put on the procedure during the first trimester of pregnancy. We allow it in every state. We allow people to get it under Medicaid and we prop up groups like Planned Parenthood with our tax dollars. We’ve compromised well over. Compromise consists of meeting in the middle. We’ve done a lot better than that.
The compromise has already been struck and I’d say it is 90% compromising on the right, 10% compromising from the left.
A Higher Law
Under God’s law, the only permissible way for Christians of any denomination to get out of this one is to demand conscious protection laws for all Americans. That is the LEAST a compromise should look like.
Let’s be clear. This is only secondarily an abortion issue. Primarily it is a First Amendment issue. The Government should not be able to tell anyone how to practice their religion. A new healthcare law doesn’t provide an exemption to the first Amendment! Whether we are Catholic, Mormon, Jewish, Muslim or Evangelical, as an employer, we shouldn’t be forced to pay for plans that provide an option to obtain a procedures that we believe, based off of indisputable scientific fact — is soft infanticide. It doesn’t matter whether you agree or not, it is our religious belief. Waivers for conscious protection should be granted to anyone who declares so on religious grounds. This includes Catholic hospitals, evangelical universities, Jewish gas station owners, or hog slaughtering farms owned and operated by Muslims. Conscious protection is a fundamental result of a broadly construed First Amendment, and in America our First Amendment has always been broadly construed (excluding Christians).
Catholics compromise at their own peril. But they don’t have to. Catholics pushed through Obama’s healthcare law when it was on the ten yard line, he owes them and he can’t get re-elected without them.
But if they compromise and offer a way for people to pay for birth control and abortificients, they not only enable more abortions to take place, they not only deepen the institution of abortion in our culture, they violate a higher law. The Bible is clear on when life begins and at the end of the day Christians aren’t on this Earth to provide healthcare benefits to their employees or get federal funding from the United States government or to compromise with what secular humanists believe is the right thing to do. We are here to look after those who cannot take care of themselves. We are to stand up for widows and orphans, not adopt insurance plans that exploit single mothers and kill would-be orphans.
God told David that he knew him in the womb.
“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.” Psalm 139:13
God told Job that he was formed and fashioned in the womb. Our creation was no accident, it was by design.
“Did not he who made me in the womb make him? And did not one fashion us in the womb?” Job 31:15
“Your hands have made and fashioned me; give me understanding that I may learn your commandments.” Psalm 119:73
John the Baptist was self aware enough as an unborn infant, that he literally leapt in the womb as he recognized Jesus’ presence.
“When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.” Luke 1:41
God knew our spirits in the womb and he knew the spirits of over 300,000 lost Americans that were aborted by our nation in 2011.
“But when He who set me apart, even from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, was pleased to reveal His son in me, that I might preach Him among the Gentiles.” Galatians 1:15-16
We have a responsibility to stand for those who have no one else to stand for them. Yahweh asked Israel:
“How long will you defend the unjust
and show partiality to the wicked?
Defend the weak and the fatherless;
uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed.
Rescue the weak and the needy;
deliver them from the hand of the wicked. Psalm 82
Who is more weak, who is more fatherless than babies chosen for abortion? People that take a pro-abortion position aren’t simply people we disagree with, like we often do on marriage, taxes, foreign policy and entitlements. This is an issue of life and death.
“Learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.” Isaiah 1:17
God says that we need not show partiality to wicked people. We don’t need to defend people who rally for the cause of snuffing out life when it is socially of financially inconvenient. We have a responsibility to take up the cause of the fatherless.
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.” Proverbs 31:8-9
The Catholic Church knows what we are facing better than most and that is why it must stand stronger than most.
President Obama picks and chooses when to follow the Bible we adhere to, but the faithful cannot afford to do the same.
Victory within reach
Over the ensuing weeks, the Catholic Church must stand against the Democrats on this issue. My evangelical brothers and sisters should join them in our support. While many catholic leaders have been strong, I am sure many others are already weighing how to capitulate, I hope they will not. They have the political capital to hold strong and to demand conscious law requirements for not only their schools and hospitals BUT FOR ALL private Catholic and other religious business owners and organizations. As president Obama encouraged us to do last week, stand up for those who cannot stand for themselves. That is the Church’s responsibility. If they can do that, they not only win a political fight in America, but they win a small victory in the heavenly battle between righteousness and the enemies thereof. This is a fight worth waging and victory is within your grasp, but only if they hold strong.
So here is the compromise – drop the entire demand or we will (1) see you in November and (2) see you in the Courts. That is the fairest compromise to strike.
Tim Griffin is the editor of griffinelection.com